New Jersey Family Law Attorneys
Call to Request a Free Consultation 732.810.0034
Grounds for Divorce in New Jersey Understand The Different Types of Divorce by Contacting Our Firm

New Jersey Grounds for Divorce

Divorce Attorneys in East Brunswick

When you make the decision to file for divorce, you need to state the reason for the divorce in the paperwork that is filed with the Court. The reasons are called the “grounds” for divorce. With this, many clients wonder what the differences are between a “no-fault” and fault based divorce.

No-Fault Divorce

The state of New Jersey is technically considered a “no-fault” state when filing for divorce. This means that blame does not need to be placed on either party for a divorce to be finalized. When filing for a “no-fault” divorce, the grounds will be “irreconcilable differences” which has become the most popular ground for divorce since becoming an option in 2007. There is a common misconception that parties need to be separated for a certain period of time prior to filing for divorce. This is not true. In order to file a divorce under irreconcilable difference, the parties simply must have experienced the irreconcilable difference for at least six months prior to filing and these differences must be the cause of the breakdown of the marriage. The reason most people file for divorce under irreconcilable difference is because neither party is required to divulge the details regarding the demise of their relationship which avoids people pointing the finger at one another and in turn can avoid hostility during the process.

Fault-Based Divorce

While the state of New Jersey is technically considered a “no-fault” state, people do still have an option of filing for divorce under one of the fault based grounds that existed prior to the enactment of irreconcilable differences. A fault-based divorce requires that your divorce begins for one of the legally-accepted reasons and requires proof or testimony that the reason is present. The advantage to this is that the conduct of the spouse deemed at fault is considered admissible evidence during proceedings and can influence the judge’s decisions in awards and provisions. It is strongly advised that you retain an attorney if you are considering filing a fault-based divorce in order to ensure your testimony and evidence is all filed properly.

Acceptable grounds for a fault-based divorce as per N.J.S.2A:34-2 include:

  • Extreme cruelty: Defined as including any physical or mental cruelty which endangers the safety or health of the plaintiff or makes it improper or unreasonable to expect the plaintiff to continue to cohabit with the defendant; provided that no complaint for divorce shall be filed until after 3 months from the date of the last act of cruelty complained of in the complaint, but this provision shall not be held to apply to any counterclaim.
  • Desertion: Willful and continued desertion for the term of 12 or more months, which may be established by satisfactory proof that the parties have ceased to cohabit as man and wife.
  • Addiction or habitual drunkenness: Meaning the marriage fell apart because one person’s addiction to any narcotic drug or habitual drunkenness for a period of 12 or more consecutive months subsequent to marriage and next preceding the filing of the complaint.
  • Imprisonment: When the defendant is in jail for 18 or more consecutive months after marriage, provided that where the divorce action is not filed until after the defendant's release, the parties have not resumed cohabitation following such imprisonment.
  • Institutionalization: When one party suffers from mental illness for a period of 24 or more consecutive months subsequent to marriage and next preceding the filing of the complaint.
  • Adultery: Adultery exists when one spouse rejects the other by entering into a personal intimate relationship with any other person, irrespective of the specific sexual acts performed; the rejection of the spouse coupled with out-of-marriage intimacy constitutes adultery. When filing a divorce under adultery the person your spouse is having the affair with must be named in the Complaint.
  • Deviant sexual conduct: Deviant sexual conduct voluntarily performed by the defendant without the consent of the plaintiff.

Filing a fault based divorce could impact the length and complexity of your case. It is always best to speak to an attorney before formally filing for divorce, and allow them to advise you on the best option to take.

At Rozin | Golinder Law, our East Brunswick divorce lawyers provide dedicated and high-quality counsel for those who need assistance with a marital dissolution issue. Our legal team knows the importance of quality representation during a divorce and that each case is as unique as the people involved in it. Our legal ability has been recognized through numerous accolades, including being named one of the Top Ten Attorneys Under 40 by the National Association of Family Law Attorneys last year.

Get started with your divorce case today! For a free case evaluation, call Rozin | Golinder Law at (732) 810-0034.

Our Blog

Recent Posts
  • Alternatives to New Jersey Divorce Court: Mediation and Arbitration

    Even when both parties agree it’s best to go their separate ways, few relish the actual divorce process itself – especially if it involves costly ...

    Continue Reading
  • Is It Possible to Divorce Someone Without Their Knowing?

    A Texas man is being sought by authorities after he allegedly fraudulently finalized his divorce without his wife’s knowing it. Investigators say he ...

    Continue Reading
  • New Jersey Child Support: Court-Ordered College Tuition

    In Flynn v. Flynn the Appellate Division of the Superior Court of New Jersey recently look at the issue of court-ordered college tuition. In that ...

    Continue Reading

Real Reviews From Previous Clients

  • Amazing Lawyer!!!

    “Elizabeth was amazing from the very beginning of my divorce process. She not only was clear and prompt in all communication, but also connected with me on a personal level where I felt very comfortable going into all details of my divorce and the reasons why I was getting divorced. I whole heartily recommend her and her team. Not only did she help me through the process, but did so within 4 months! I met her in March and was divorced by June! Thank you so much Liz, you are truly an exceptional lawyer!!”

    Shirley G.

  • Forever Grateful

    “Professional and absolutely down to earth, Mrs Rosin-Golinder and her knowledgeable staff listened to my needs and crafted a prenuptial agreement that will not only act as a safety net for my business but as piece of mind if thing don’t go as planned. With my first marriage around the corner, my first child on the way and preparing for my first mobilization , it was an amazing feeling to have something I feared and was very very uncertain of, turn out for the best. Thank you is most certainly an understatement but for the sake of expression..... THANK YOU. You definitely have a client for life. Two thumbs up LIZ!!!”

    Anthony R.

  • Very Highly Competent, Excellent, Compassionate, NJ's Top Attorney

    “I retained her after reading online reviews about her and I am so glad I believed it. I read other client comments and I truly agree with them she is an Exceptional attorney who has helped me to get my kids back to NJ, then got my TRO dismissed in a full blown FRO trial and represented me in my divorce case too. My case was extensively litigious and very volatile. The way Elizabeth handled it was TERRIFIC. She is one of the Attorneys who does not want unnecessary litigation unless the opposing party doesn't want to settle and keeps litigating and we had to go through it. She knows the LAW and very often she is able to read the Judge's mind which I have witnessed in the court order.”

    Pranav G.

  • Successful Relocation

    “Elizabeth Rozin-Golinder successfully represented my wife on a couple of occasions. Once was for child custody and the most recent was for child relocation, which required a plenary hearing. Elizabeth was very easy to communicate with in person, over the phone and through email. She worked very diligently to ensure that each case was aggressively presented and won. I highly recommend Elizabeth to anyone in need of a top notch family attorney.”

    Joshua A.

  • Short, Sweet and Thankful

    “All I have to say is this, Elizabeth is an exceptional Lawyer, and in the field of Law, I can tell you she is a game-changer, I came to her in dire need to help me obtain my Daughter through emergency circumstances, the timing was urgent, and in a matter of hours she was able to accomplish custody of my daughter, she had only 2 hours to prepare for our hearing. That's all she needed, as sharp as she is, surprised it took her that long, Ha. This is a person that reminded me that there is a lot of good in this world. If anyone were to read this, I want to assure you that she will exhaust every opportunity and resource to get the job done accordingly. I would highly, HIGHLY, recommend her to anyone in need of Professional. Job Well Done Elizabeth, Zoë and I are very thankful.”

    Daniel C.